Executive Board Meeting – April 18, 2022

Location:  ZOOM

Present:  Ric Coombe, David Kukle, Bud Gladstone, David Edinger, Bill Federice, Edward Snow, Greg Vurckio, Steve Walker, Winifred Zubin, Scott Grey, Greg Kroyer, Bennett Ratcliff,  Christina Viafore

Others:  Jeff Baker, Tim Cox, Jason Merwin, Nick Carbone, Bruce Dolph, Thomas Hoyt, Michelle Yost, Heidi Emrich, Lillian Brown, Cher Woehl

1.  Call to Order:  Ric Coombe called the meeting to order at 6:46 pm.

2.  Ric welcomed everyone and asked Jeff to share the results of our recent elections.  Jeff introduced himself to the new members (the counsel for CWT) and shared the following:

  • From Delaware County – Regular members are  Wayland (Bud) Gladstone, Edward Snow (new), and Winifred Zubin (new).  Alternate members are Shayne Moshier, Will Outsen (new) and Christina Viafore (new).
  • From Greene County – Regular members are David Kukle and Steve Walker.  Alternate members are Greg Cross (new) and Greg Kroyer (new).
  • From Schoharie County – Regular member is Bill Federice.  Alternate member is Lester Parker.
  • From Sullivan County – Regular member is Ric Coombe.  Alternate member is Scott Grey.
  • From Ulster County – Regular members are David Edinger (new) and Greg Vurckio.  Alternative members are Drew Boggess and Bennett Ratcliff (new).

Ric congratulated our new members and encouraged everyone to participate as CWT moves forward with the focus on the future of the watersheds. 3.  March 21, 2022, Meeting Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve the minutes made by Steve Walker and seconded by Bud Gladstone.  Motion carried.

4.  Election of CWT Officers:  Ric opened the vote for the new CWT officers by first sharing who the current officers are: Ric Coombe-Chairman, David Kukle-Vice Chairman and Bud Gladstone-Treasurer.  Ric asked for a motion to elect new officers, either by individual positions or by keeping the current slate of officers.   Steve Walker made the motion to retain the current slate of officers.  Bill Federice seconded the motion.  Ric called for the members roll call vote as follows:

CWT Member Wayland (Bud) Gladstone       voting              Yes

CWT Member Edward H. Snow                        voting              Yes

CWT Member Winifred Zubin                        abstain                                   

CWT Member David Kukle                             voting              Yes

CWT Member Steve Walker                           voting              Yes

CWT Member William Federice                     voting              Yes

CWT Member Ric Coombe                             voting              Yes

CWT Member David Edinger                          voting              Yes

CWT Greg Vurckio                                          voting              Yes

Motion to retain the current officers was carried with eight (8) yes votes and one abstain.

5.  Reports:
a.  FAD Deliverables: 

  • Jeff provided the history and background on the septage issue CWC with support from CWT are currently working to resolve.   The issue lies with the amount of septage NYC is willing to accept from the watersheds.  Jeff provided an in-depth explanation of the watershed agreements with DEP that were put in place in 1997 and then revised in 2016.  Jeff then turned the discussion over to Ric and Jason (Merwin) to share the results of the meeting they had with DEP Deputy Commissioner Paul Rush on Monday, April 18th, 2022, at the DEP office in Arkville.
       
  • Both Ric and Jason felt the meeting was very productive and positive, sharing that Deputy Commissioner Rush understood the concerns brought forward by CWC and acknowledged the oversight that occurred when DEP reviewed the watershed agreements and septage amounts.     Deputy Commissioner Rush said that they are capacity constrained and need to look at options for sludge removal from their plants.  He also shared that they would return to historical amounts allowed as they continue to work with CWC and CWT on short-term and long-term solutions to this problem.   DEP emphasized their commitment to working towards mutual solutions and would be providing CWC a letter summarizing the meeting and short-term solution.
      
  • Regarding the Delaware County Draft Resolution on the Septage Issue that was shared with members, Ric explained that while CWT supports the resolution,  official response will be held in abeyance until the letter from DEP is received.  In the event the DEP letter is unsatisfactory to CWT, then authorization will be provided to Jeff, with consultation from Ric, to move forward with an official complaint consistent with the Delaware County Resolution to the Partnership Council.  David Kukle made the motion to provide Jeff this authorization, Greg Vurckio seconded the motion.  Motion was carried.
     
  • Jason shared that CWC will also move forward with a resolution to the Partnership Council in the event the DEP letter is not satisfactory.
      
  • Once the DEP letter is received it will be shared with members and determination will be made if resolutions to the Partnership Council will be required.
     
  • Ric closed this discussion thanking Jason, Tim (Cox) and Delaware County for reaching out to CWT for support and for assisting to lead this effort.

b.  Streamside Acquisition: 

  • Jeff reported that the Land Acquisition Program is currently up for renewal and that SAP is currently being reviewed for extension.  One focus is on how to address the many issues communities have with SAP.  Jeff shared that discussions with NYC occurred in the previous week  and were very positive and encouraging.  Discussions will continue to move forward with small groups at first, then expanded to include others, with the goal to present a collective view to the State that has buy-in from the watershed communities.
  • Jeff also reported that discussions are continuing on the conservation easements and provided an explanation on what conservation easements are and what changes they are attempting to make.
  • Michelle shared that NYC is looking for a project that could demonstrate how land swapping could work and be successful. 

c.  Flood Commission Reports – nothing to report—Ric explained to new members what this entailed.

d.  CWC Report –  Jason reported the following:

  • The CWC Annual Meeting had their annual meeting and reelected new board members.
  • CWC is still working on negotiating the contracts reported on in previous meetings.

e.  Below the Reservoirs – nothing to report

6. Warrants and Treasurer’s Report:   Bud reported that as of March 31, 2022, 
the checking account has $1,501.99 and
the savings account has $139,951.85. 
Greg Vurckio made motion to accept the Treasurer’s report, seconded by David Edinger.  Report accepted.   Bud presented warrant #92 in the amount of $1,745.17 for payment of March legal fees of $573.50 and January – March administrative fees of $1,171.67.
Edward Snow made a motion to pay warrant #92, seconded by David EdingerMotion carried.

7.  Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn was made by Greg Vurckio, seconded by Bill Federice.  Motion carried.  Meeting adjourned at 7:41 pm.

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